It's been confirmed that Andrew Lloyd Webber's latest musical, Whistle Down The Wind, with lyrics by Jim Steinman, will open at the Aldwych Theatre on 1 July 1998.
This musical was originally seen in Washington DC in 1996 but it has now been 'reworked' and 'restructured' for it's West End opening -- including some new songs. No casting information is yet available. Gale Edwards is expected to direct. Tickets go on sale 1 February 1998.
Set in a sleepy backwater town in 1959 Louisiana, three days before Christmas, Whistle Down The Wind tells the story of three children who discover a stranger hiding in their barn. They believe the man to be Christ and in their innocence feel a need to hide him from the adults in the small community. Each child fears he will be harmed as happened once before. At the same time the adults have been hiding the news from the children that a prisoner from a nearby penitentiary has escaped and may be at-large in their town. A wonderful ambiguity then surrounds the remainder of the story and we are never quite sure whether the innocence of the children or the experience of the parents and elders is to be believed.
Whistle Down The Wind will join Andrew Lloyd Webber's 4 other West End musicals - Cats (opened 11 May 1981), Starlight Express (27 March 1984), Phantom of the Opera (9 October 1986) and the revival of Jesus Christ Superstar (19 November 1996).
-- By Paul Dixon
Albemarle of London's West End Theatre Guide